No. ’11 Méthode Noir Black Tea from Steven Smith Teamaker

locationTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Black

Where to Buy:  Steven Smith Teamaker

Tea Description:

An elegant blend of high-grown Ceylon black teas aged and scented in a Pinot Noir barrel. Deliciously complex with a subtle taste of oak, nuances of Pinot Noir grapes and herbes de Provence. An unlikely, but rewarding, pairing.

Taster’s Review:

During my last visit to the Smith Teamaker shop in Portland, I saw a package of this Méthode Noir Scented Black tea and I had to grab it.  Having tried one of Steven Smith’s aged-and-scented-in-a-barrel teas previously and loving it, I was confident that this would be equally as enjoyable.

My previous experience was with a Whiskey barrel aged and scented tea, this time, the tea has been scented and aged in a barrel that held Pinot Noir.  By placing the tea leaves in the barrel that once held the spirits, the tea leaves absorb the essence of not only the wine, but also the wood of the barrel … and I’m really enjoying the result.

If I had tasted this tea without knowing what it was, my first guess would be a Darjeeling based upon the muscatel notes of the tea … however, I would be thrown by the thicker, richer body of this tea.  I am loving the sweet, grape-y tones with notes of currant.   I taste the rich, oak-y flavor and a touch of savory herbs.  It is very enjoyable … this is the kind of tea I’d enjoy serving to guests … kind of like a fine wine but in a teacup!

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